Festive fare of lusty urban tales
BOOK for a show? You must be joking. Capetonians tend to operate on a strictly last-minute basis. We prefer to see if it is beach weather before deciding to head for the theatre. However, as evidenced recently by several sold-out runs in the Mother City, it may be prudent to reserve seats for the festive season.
People were just about tackling one another – rugby-style – at the Cape Town Fringe (September/October), to get seats for We Didn’t Come To Hell For The Croissants, performed by Gemma Kahn and directed by Lindiwe Matshikiza.
For those who weren’t lucky and for those who want to see it again (it’s that kind of show) – it is at Kalk Bay Theatre from December 8-12.
Kahn uses the Japanese Buddhist storytelling method of Kamishibai to illustrate tales written by Tertius Kapp, Rosa Lyster, Lebogang Mogashoa, Justin Oswald, Nicholas Spagnoletti and Louis Viljoen. Kamishibai originated in Japanese Buddhist temples in the 12th century, when monks used drawings displayed in a frame for visual effect.
Kahn slides pictures in and out of the frame as she unfurls delicious stories based on the Seven Deadly Sins.
These are urban tales with lusty images and characters, and are not suitable for children. Kahn is accompanied by Roberto Pombo who slithers around, tossing in delicious asides.
After Croissants, the Kalk Bay Theatre presents Bon Soir, from December 15 to January 24. This production was sold out at the National Arts Festival, says the theatre’s Vanessa Harris.
“It’s our big festive season show. It’s in the style of Cirque de Soleil, Lido – comedy to dance to circus – with aerial acts and strength acts. It’s funny and sexy enough to be exciting but not so you can’t take your families.”
The show features brothers Ash and Brad Searle, Nadine Theron, Ruby Burton, and Lucy and Alex Tops. From December 1-5, between Croissants and Bon Soir, James Grace – our George Clooney look-alike if he loses the beard – pays tribute to guitar work of artists and groups such as The Shadows, The Beatles and Eric Clapton.
A show likely to pull capacity houses is Stuart Taylor’s 2015 in Review, at the Baxter, from December 1-5. Taylor will be joined on stage by Mel Jones and Oscar Petersen. Direction is by Brent Palmer. Comics Martin Evans and Yaaseen Barnes have contributed material.
“We all have our bits to do, ensemble bits and sketches,” says Jones. Petersen adds: “We’ll be playing a support role for most of it – like a chorus.” A Greek Cho- rus? “There you go. That’s the plan; you never know what will happen”. Petersen, who is part of the hit comedy franchise Joe Barber, is no stranger to comedy duo work but for Jones, it is new territory.
“When you are working with someone else on stage, it brings a new dynamic – you have to listen to them and can’t just be in your own bubble,” she says. The trio look at 2015 – the news, the politics; the personal. “It may have been a tough year, but we are trying to find the lighter side,” says Jones.
There will be a musical interlude. Stuart Taylor singing? That should be fun.
● Tickets for We Didn’t Come To Hell For The Croissants and James Grace are R125; 2-for-price-of-1 on Tuesdays. Tickets for Bon Soir are R155 and 2-for-1 on Tuesdays. Book at www.kalkbaytheatre.co.za or call 0217887257. Stuart Taylor’s 2015 in Review is on at the Baxter and tickets cost R100-R200. Book at Computicket 0861 915 8000 or www.computicket.co.za
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CIRCUS ACT: Nadine Theron in Kalk Bay Theatre from December 15.